Saturday, February 18, 2006

November - National Novel Writing Month

Join writer Kerri Buckley for the monthly radio show, The Literary Cafe - A Production of Coast Community Radio; KMUN in Astoria, and KTCB in Tillamook.
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Ah, this show was such fun! I interviewed National Novel Writing Month founder, Chris Baty, when he was in Portland last August for the Willamette Writer's Conference. It was a great interview. For those of you who don't know about NaNoWriMo, as it is affectionately called, it is a 30 day novel-writing marathon (frenzy) that takes place every November, and has participants from all around the world numbering in the tens of thousands! Every November, people gather in their home cities and write together weekly, even more frequently, to see what novel writing is really like. This event is for anyone who ever wanted to try their hand at writing a best-seller. Chris talked to me about how the idea for NaNoWriMo originated, started out, and how it's grown by leaps and bounds. He has a very charismatic personality, and his enthusiasm and ability to inspire all people, not just writers, is contagious. Chris also talked about his book, No Plot? No Problem!, equally fun and informative on writing a novel in a month.
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Also featured on this show was Seattle author and teacher, Waverly Fitzgerald. She talked about NaNoWriMo, and her experiences with the monthly writing marathon. Waverly has a great website for writers, with articles for writers featured. Visit it at www.waverlyfitzgerald.com
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Portland author Bill Johnson talked about the craft of novel writing and his book, A Story is a Promise. He gave advice on beginning the story on page one, and talked about how many authors don't begin the real story of their novels until page forty. Bill is the office manager for Willamette Writers, and a great resource, himself. Visit his website at www.storyispromise.com
for more essays on writing, order his book, and dig into all of his advice on writing and stories.
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Jennifer Kammerdiener of Austin Texas discussed her first few years as a NaNoWriMo novelist. Jennifer works as a painter and has another job, so November is pretty intense for her. There is a great group in Austin, she said, and they meet year-round. She found that making an outline helped greatly, and sharing the experience with a friend was really important. She also talked about making a huge calendar just for the month of NaNoWriMo. Very creative! You can find her profile on NaNoWriMo's website at La Luna Unita.
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Finally, in this show, I told listeners who needed more structure for their novel to visit Randy Ingermanson's site. There you can find his famous Snowflake Method of structuring a novel with spreadsheets on your computer. Find this method, and more at www.rsingermanson.com
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Many thanks to Chris Baty, Waverly Fitzgerald, Bill Johnson, Jennifer Kammerdiener, and Randy Ingermanson! For those of you who wish to try your hand at writing a novel in thirty days, good luck!
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To see just how I fared during November, check out my blog on NaNoWriMo at www.kerribuckleysnanowrimo.blogspot.com